Tuesday 07 May 2013

Barclays U21s: Newcastle look to Ameobi

Ahead of their play-off match against Newcastle, we look at Everton's Under-21s

Newcastle's Sammy Ameobi is set to lead the line in the absence of Adam Campbell

Throughout the inaugural Barclays Under-21 Premier League premierleague.com has brought the latest news and results from the competition.

As the competition enters its final stages we look more closely at the teams taking part in the play-offs. After looking at Everton, we next focus on Newcastle United who qualified by winning Group 2 of the second stage and take on Everton at Goodison Park on Tuesday, 7 May for a place in the semi-finals against Elite Group winners Tottenham Hotspur.

The squad for the match has been announced on the Newcastle website with England Under-21 forward Sammy Ameobi, fresh from his loan spell at Middlesbrough, leading the line ahead of the absent Adam Campbell.

Newcastle squad: Rolando Aarons, Lewis Aird, Jak Alnwick, Sammy Ameobi, Gael Bigirimana, Macaulay Gillesphey, Alex Gilliead, Bradden Inman, Steven Logan, Kevin Mbabu, Brandon Miele, Jonathan Mitchell, Michael Richardson, Lubo Satka, James Tavernier.

Dan King, of Newcastle's website, nufc.co.uk, tells us more about the team.

Newcastle's season so far

Played 24; Won 10; Drawn 6; Lost 8; Goals for: 38; Goals against: 39.
Phase 1: 6th (Group 2)
Phase 2: 1st (Group 2)
Final stage: 7 May, v Everton (A), Goodison Park, 7pm (play-off).

Three players to watch

Adam Campbell
Campbell has been Newcastle United's top scorer in the Barclays Under-21 Premier League despite regularly being on first-team duty. If available on Tuesday, the 18-year-old's pace and intelligence will cause problems for the Toffees.

James Tavernier
The 21-year-old has been the regular captain in recent weeks and whether he is at full-back or central defence he is a real athlete and a composed figure

Lubo Satka
The Slovakian is another key figure who quietly goes about his business with a maturity way beyond his 17 years.

Style of play

As one would expect from a side coached by Peter Beardsley, together with former Scotland midfielder Willie Donachie, a passing style is encouraged. The formation regularly changes depending on personnel but in last Friday's defeat by Bolton Wanderers, a 4-1-4-1 system was employed with Jonathyn Quinn the main striker.

Team strengths & weaknesses

Many of Newcastle's wins in recent weeks have come courtesy of late goals, so a never-say-die attitude is key to their success.

The main weakness is a lack of experience. Ten of the 16 players in the squad against Bolton are also eligible for the Under-18s, but the "Toon Teens" are learning quickly.

Highlight match of the second stage

19 April Newcastle United 4-0 Crystal Palace

St James' Park was the venue as Newcastle took on Crystal Palace last month and the Magpies ran out 4-0 winners. Gabriel Obertan scored a hat-trick and Jamaican teenager Rolando Aarons was also on target.

Manager

Willie Donachie will be making an emotional return to Goodison Park on Tuesday. The Scot was Joe Royle's assistant when Everton lifted the FA Cup in 1995. He played for Scotland in the 1978 FIFA World Cup and spent the majority of his playing career with Manchester City.

Donachie began coaching under Royle at Oldham Athletic and also served him at Everton and City. Since then he has managed at Millwall and the Antigua and Barbuda national team before arriving at Newcastle in 2009 and helping Sammy Ameobi and Shane Ferguson become top-flight players.

You can follow developments on Twitter with the Premier League's account @premierleague or via the hashtag #BU21PL

Key Points

  • Ahead of the final stage of the Barclays U21 Premier League we look at the participating teams
  • Dan King, of nufc.co.uk, tells us more about Newcastle United
  • Newcastle qualified through winning Group 2 and face everton in the play-off

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